What is the Lord telling you to do today? Is it something He has been whispering in your ear for months? Have you not stepped out because of fear, uncertainty, or is it because you are comfortable where you are? I want you to read these next words carefully: Obedience Makes Things Happen! I’ve watched people OBEY the message preached and come back with testimonies of what they saw happen with their own eyes. People come and sit in my office, telling me they feel called to take a different path, but they are afraid. When they step out in faith, God is there working in miraculous ways! Others rarely have a testimony and then say, “I’m not sure if this stuff works.” Let me make this as clear as I possibly can. When we obey Jesus, when we follow His Word and listen for His voice, stuff happens. Good stuff. Great stuff. Miraculous stuff. When we don’t obey … well, the opposite happens. Take a look at the disciples. When they doubted, when they didn’t do what Jesus said, their attempts fell flat. When they obeyed, they were “healing people everywhere” (Luke 9:6). Abraham is another great example. In Genesis, God tells...

Do you ever really think about obedience as part of your life? We often look at Jesus’ leadership lessons, His building of His Church, how He treated those around Him, and His wondrous miracles, but all of those things came from His obedience and desire to do the will of His Father. Obedience to His Father’s will was so important to Him that He called it His FOOD (John 4:34). He literally could not live without obedience. This week we remember the sacrifice Jesus made for each of us. We celebrate His Resurrection with our friends and family and are grateful for the free gift of grace it allows. What I want us to remember, also, is that Jesus didn’t come down from heaven to accomplish a personal agenda of wiping out sin. He came to earth, lived and died as a human, to carry out the will of the One who had sent Him (John 6:38). He was intent on being obedient “to the point of death” (Phil. 2:8). In His incarnation, He chose to submit Himself to the plan of redemption, even though His obedience to His Father meant increasing opposition and hatred from his enemies. The mighty Lamb of God “humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of...

“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.” (1 Timothy 1:15)   These are the words of the Apostle Paul, and we know from Scripture that he did indeed do some truly horrible things before Jesus entered his life. But what I want you to understand is that Paul was living in a time of complete depravity, under the authority of an emperor who was truly insane. And yet he still thought his sin was the worst. He was right. Just as my sin is the worst, and so is yours. All sin is created equal, just as all sinners are created equal. The act itself may seem minor, or truly horrible, but it is the decision behind that act that matters to Jesus.   When a person sins, he or she CHOSE to sin. Jesus doesn’t love that person any less, but He does hate the sin. That is why He came to earth and gave His life to save all of us from the consequences of our sin. He didn’t come just to save the murderers, the drug addicts, and the thieves who have repented. He also...

Humans have developed a very bad habit. That of underestimating our Lord. Most of the time that habit starts because you and I underestimate ourselves and those around us, and that doubt directly reflects how we view God’s ability to work in and through our lives. We aren’t the first to let this happen in our lives. Look at how some of our Bible heroes underestimated themselves and others. Moses continually underestimated his abilities because he doubted. He felt he couldn’t talk right. God gave him the words he needed to secure the freedom of the people of Israel. He underestimated God when he was told to part the waters with his walking stick. God used that simple walking stick to part the waters of an entire sea so the people could cross to safety. Samuel underestimated David when God said David was the one who would one day rule Israel. Samuel actually doubted the choice so much he argued that surely God didn’t want David. “He’s too young. He’s just a shepherd boy. He can’t possibly be the ruler You describe.” God did in fact raise young David from shepherd boy to giant slayer, and then on to be a great...

God tells us in His word that having faith in Him will see us through even the greatest of trails. He doesn’t promise there will be no trails. In fact, a study of Scripture gives examples of the troubles we may face, shows how others have responded to those trials, and most importantly gives us HOPE that God will faithfully walk with us through even the darkest times. When we respond in faith, accepting the Hope and Peace only He can give us, we become an example to others of God’s Love for all humankind. Scripture promises us certain rewards when we accept His Hope and share it with others. • We are promised the perseverance, character, and hope that comes from the indwelling Holy Spirit. (Rom. 5:3-5). • We are able to witness the greatness of Christ’s glory as He walks with us and shields us, resulting in a joy that shines out from us like a beacon, drawing others close to Him. (1 Peter 4:12-13) • We become stronger because we have allowed God to work through our weaknesses. (2 Cor. 12:9-10) • Through our faith, we are promised a heavenly reward. (Matt. 5:11–12) • Most amazing of all is the promise of abiding...